Category Archives: harmonic analysis

Practicing knotty piano passages, and tips on how to avoid fatigue while boosting technique (Videos)

At my You Tube Channel site, I routinely pick up comments daily, and the majority center on piano technique. While I lay no claim to being an expert in this complex universe, my trial and error practicing over decades has … Continue reading

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Playing through the entire Bach Fugue, BWV847 in C minor, fleshing out form as I go along (VIDEO)

The score is copied below the video: http://www.teoria.com/articulos/analysis/BWV847/index.htm RELATED: Analysis of Fugue in C minor, BWV847: Subject, Counter-subject I and II, Exposition, Episodes (Development) Recap subject, etc. http://arioso7.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/piano-instruction-analysis-j-s-bach-fugue-in-c-minor-bwv847-videos/

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Memorization at the piano: How to improve your skills

Memorization should be a natural outflow of consistent, thoughtful practicing. Thoughtful is underscored because it’s the most important ingredient in the process of playing a studied piece without music. It means having mental assists that relate to mapping out a … Continue reading

Posted in creative learning environment, developing sight-reading skills as an aid to memorization, El Cerrito, El Cerrito California, El Cerrito piano studio, Fresno California, harmonic analysis, improving sight reading skills, Journal of a Piano Teacher from New York to California, keyboard technique, Lillian Freundlich, Major and minor scales, memorizing piano music, mental imagery, Mildred Portney Chase, mind body connection, MTAC, muscular memory, music, music and heart, music and the breath, music memorization, music teachers association of california, musical phrasing, New York City High School of Performing Arts, New York University, Oberlin, Oberlin Conservatory, Old Fig Garden in Fresno, phrasing at the piano, pianist, piano, piano instruction, piano instructor, piano lesson, piano lessons, piano pedagogy, piano practicing, piano student, piano teacher, piano teaching repertoire, piano technique, piano tutorial, Piano World, pianoaddict.com, Pianostreet.com, pianoworld, pianoworld.com, playing piano, publishers marketplace, Rondo form, self-analysis, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Kirsten blog, Shirley Smith Kirsten, Steinway M grand piano, talkclassical.com, Teach Street, teaching piano, teaching piano scales, teaching scales, technique, Theory, Uncategorized, whole body music listening, word press, wordpress.com | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Early Intermediate Piano Repertoire: One of my favorite pieces to teach and play, J.C. Bach’s Prelude in A Minor (Video)

Randall and Nancy Faber come through with flying colors by including J.C. Bach’s Prelude in A minor in their Developing Artist Series Album, Early Intermediate Level. (Playing the Haddorff piano with its honey-dipped tone) This particular composition, sounding Baroque, but … Continue reading

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Piano Lesson: W.A. Mozart Rondo Alla Turca: Allegretto from Sonata, K.331 (Videos)

In my instructional video, I discuss how Mozart’s light-hearted Rondo is formed and ways to practice it. (The Rondo has a redundant “A” section, interspersed with contrasting B, C, D, etc. musical material) There’s a dualism of “A” minor/”A” Major … Continue reading

Posted in Classical period sonata, classissima, harmonic analysis, Journal of a Piano Teacher from New York to California, Mozart, Mozart Rondo Alla Turca, Mozart Sonata K.331 in A Major, New York City High School of Performing Arts, New York University, Oberlin Conservatory, pianist, piano, piano instruction, piano lesson, piano lessons, piano pedagogy, piano tutorial, Piano World, pianoaddict.com, Pianostreet.com, pianoworld, pianoworld.com, playing piano, publishers marketplace, publishersmarketplace, publishersmarketplace.com, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Kirsten blog, Shirley Smith Kirsten, Steinway grand piano, Steinway M grand piano, Teach Street, teaching piano, Theory, W.A. Mozart, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, word press, wordpress.com, you tube, you tube video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Piano Instruction: Using the wrist to taper phrases

I’ve always believed that it’s not enough to rely on fingers, or finger action alone, to play the piano expressively. For me, enlisting the wrist, and rolling into notes, especially those that are shaped down at the conclusion of phrases … Continue reading

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How long should a piano student stay with a piece?

As a teacher, I’ve often pondered this question, concluding that there are varying answers which depend on the advancement and motivation of individual students. Certainly no fixed formula addresses the length of time a pupil needs to fully realize his … Continue reading

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The Piano Universe of Discussion Boards, Digital Feedback, and Self-analysis (Video)

I love to scan the Boards at Piano World, UK Forums, Piano Street, Piano Addict, and other stop-off points such as My Music Life Blogspot and Color in my Piano to get a feel for the concerns of piano students … Continue reading

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The Art of Phrasing at the Piano: Starting the process with Beginners (Videos)

For some unexplained reason, my earliest piano studies never included the art of phrasing. My primer teacher stressed naming notes, finding them, affixing correct fingering and counting out robotic beats. I knew nothing about feeling a melodic landscape; putting the … Continue reading

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Piano Lesson: Fritz, Age 7, performs his composed piece, “FINDING GOLD” (Video)

Over a period of three weeks, seven year old Fritz, who’d been taking piano lessons for about 7 months, composed a piece that he titled, “Finding Gold.” The student has been using Faber Primer Piano Adventures, with my inserted modifications. … Continue reading

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